Some of you may have read this interesting New York Times profile of David B. Lat, who serves as Article III Groupie's mouthpiece to the world. Lat has some corrections, clarifications, and comments on Jonathan Miller's article, which should hopefully appear in these pages in the near future.
For the time being, however, A3G would like to defend David Lat against a specific accusation that has been leveled against him by some who have read the article. If you've met David Lat in person, you know that although he's a genial and pleasant fellow, he's a bit of a wimp. This is why he needs a strong woman -- to wit, Article 3 Groupie -- to rush to his aid.
[Lat] skipped the sixth grade, and attended Regis High School, the prestigious all-boys Catholic high school in Manhattan, where he gained a reputation as a skilled debater (he sang the Banana Boat song when he delivered a speech about Haitian refugees). From there he went on to Harvard, where he socialized little while earning a degree in English and adopted a conservative worldview, writing lacerating opinion columns for The Harvard Crimson.
He declared, among other things, that campus liberals had no "no broad, overarching philosophy." He lamented the revocation of Ireland's ban on divorce, and repeatedly castigated the school's Gay, Lesbian and Bisexual Student Association.
In one column, entitled "Those 'Happy Homos,'" he wrote: "National Coming Out Day is just another event in the recent rash of identity-based pride rallies. These alleged celebrations of diversity have devolved into mutual masturbation festivals. They reassure people who are still deeply troubled by their lifestyle choices and are desperately seeking a stamp of approval. We have a duty to deny them this approval."
Those statements brought a harsh rebuke from members of the organization in a subsequent letter to the editor that called the column "spiteful and logically vapid."
Based on the foregoing, some of you have accused David Lat of being "homophobic." Much could be said on this subject; but for present purposes, suffice it to say that nothing could be farther from the truth.
Just as Samuel Alito should not be judged based on statements in a job application from 20 years ago, Lat should not be judged based on his (literally) sophomoric ramblings in a college newspaper, from over a decade ago. These "youthful indiscretions" -- of a hotheaded, rabble rousing campus conservative -- should not be viewed as an accurate reflection of who Lat is today. Nor do they represent the views he currently holds on such issues as homosexuality, gay marriage, etc.
Also, for the record, the reference in the column's title to "Happy Homo[s]" -- which could be viewed as derisive or derogatory -- should not be ascribed to Lat. If you read the column in its entirety, you'll see that the title was merely quoting from posters that were put up around the Harvard campus by the BGLSA.
More on this subject may follow in a subsequent post. But for the time being, A3G wanted to get these thoughts into circulation, to stop the flood of hate mail that poor Mr. Lat has been receiving from people who believe, incorrectly, that he harbors some animosity towards gay Americans (or, for that matter, gay persons of any nationality).